The Most Common Fish to Catch in Louisiana: A Guide for Anglers
Located in the southern United States, Louisiana is a fisherman’s paradise with its vast wetlands, bountiful rivers, and extensive coastline. The state offers an incredible variety of fishing opportunities, making it a popular destination for both recreational and professional anglers. If you’re planning a fishing trip to Louisiana or just curious about the local fishing scene, this blog post will introduce you to the most common fish species you can expect to catch.
1. Speckled Trout (Cynoscion nebulosus)
Also known as “specks” or “spotted sea trout,” speckled trout are one of the most sought-after sportfish in Louisiana. These beautiful fish feature distinct black spots on their silvery bodies and can be found year-round along coastal estuaries, brackish marshes, and nearshore areas. Known for their aggressive strikes and challenging fights, speckled trout provide anglers with thrilling experiences.
Tips for Catching Speckled Trout:
- Fish during early morning or late afternoon when speckled trout are more active
- Use live shrimp or artificial lures that mimic small baitfish
- Cast your line near structures such as oyster beds or submerged rocks
- Vary your retrieval speed to find what entices the fish best on any given day
2. Redfish (Red Drum) – Sciaenops ocellatus)
A favorite among saltwater anglers in Louisiana is the redfish due to its hard-hitting strikes and impressive power once hooked. Also called “red drum,” these copper-toned fish have distinctive black spots on their tails. Redfish can be found in both saltwater and brackish environments, often congregating near marshes, grass flats, and oyster reefs.
Tips for Catching Redfish:
- Use live or cut bait such as shrimp, mullet, or blue crab
- Cast your line near structures like docks or fallen trees where redfish seek shelter
- Consider using topwater lures during mornings or evenings when redfish are feeding on the surface
- Patience is key – allow the fish to fully take the bait before setting the hook
3. Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides)
If freshwater fishing is more your style, Louisiana offers excellent opportunities for catching largemouth bass. These greenish-black fish with a protruding lower jaw are highly prized among anglers for their aggressiveness and acrobatic fights. Lakes, rivers, and bayous throughout Louisiana provide ideal habitats for largemouth bass to thrive.
Tips for Catching Largemouth Bass:
- Fish around submerged vegetation such as lily pads or hydrilla beds where bass often hide
- Select artificial baits like plastic worms or crankbaits that mimic natural prey
- Vary your retrieval technique – try steady retrieves, jerking motions, or pause-and-go movements to entice strikes from wary bass <
- Pick early morning or late afternoon hours when largemouth bass are most active